W. Pico Mistral

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Discussion of diving methods and equipment available prior to the development of BCDs beyond the horse collar. This forum is dedicated to the pre-1970 diving.
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antique diver
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Thu May 18, 2017 10:11 am

Bronze06 wrote:Quote from Bryan:

".... I do not have a good relationship with HDS here in the US unfortunately as they rarely remember who I am and I'm under the impression that my "qualifications" to speak on vintage scuba equipment does not meet their standards. Although I don't have a problem getting information and articles published in other HDS magazines in other parts of the world. :wink:"

Go figure, that is why HDS is losing membership. :evil:


Well, what would someone in Florida know anyway? Maybe if you were on the west coast you would have better "qualifications" :roll:

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Bryan
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Thu May 18, 2017 10:32 am

antique diver wrote:
Bronze06 wrote:Quote from Bryan:

".... I do not have a good relationship with HDS here in the US unfortunately as they rarely remember who I am and I'm under the impression that my "qualifications" to speak on vintage scuba equipment does not meet their standards. Although I don't have a problem getting information and articles published in other HDS magazines in other parts of the world. :wink:"

Go figure, that is why HDS is losing membership. :evil:


Well, what would someone in Florida know anyway? Maybe if you were on the west coast you would have better "qualifications" :roll:


I have other windmills to tilt at....I've given up on that one.

Local customer called and said the LDS he was at refused to fill his cylinder because my VIP sticker was not valid as I'm not a REAL STORE.

Calif store calls me up and read me the riot act because I told one of their customers they were full of shit telling him his MK5 could not be serviced.

Never a dull moment here.....Head down, into the wind typical day here at VDH 8)
Doing it right should include some common sense, not just blindly following specs and instructions. .Gary D, AWAP on SB

ovalis
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Thu May 18, 2017 12:29 pm

I will disagree with Ovalis, in that I believe your reg. was made in late 1961 to early 62. The 1963 catalog clearly shows that in that model year the Mistral had a "new type' Kleer-EZ mouthpiece and all black configuration. When in doubt look at the catalogs but beware. The picture in the 1962 USD catalog is of an older "up-graded" DW "Stream Air" with a Mistral sticker on it. This was probably a stock photo and USD was notoriously cheap when upgrading their catalogs. Also, by 1962, USD had replaced the so-called "improved" hose clamps (beginning in "possibly" very late 59 and running till 1961) with the new nut and bolt configuration that VDH produces to this day. They also (and I quote the 1962 and 1963 catalog in the photos below) came with a KLEER-EZ mouthpiece (read further on for clarification) in 1962 though the picture, of course, shows the older reg pic. the same reg. incidentally, that appears in the 1958-62 catalogs. Technically, the 1962 Mistral should look identical (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE YELLOW HOSE COLOR) to the 1963 Mistral according to the product description, as the so-called "scientifically designed" mouthpiece (Curved mouthpiece) had just come out in 1962; see below


You can disagree with me if you like and get your information from the catalogs (try that with the early Scubapro ones), but I'll stick with my 20 years of researching & cataloging serial numbers and comparing them with factory inspection tags stating the exact date a particular serial # was assembled at the factory, as well as original hydro dates on tanks that regulators were sold with along with some other info that I pick up to help narrow down and create windows of time of when regulators were produced and when changes were made.

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ScubaLawyer
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Thu May 18, 2017 12:50 pm

ovalis wrote:
I will disagree with Ovalis, in that I believe your reg. was made in late 1961 to early 62. The 1963 catalog clearly shows that in that model year the Mistral had a "new type' Kleer-EZ mouthpiece and all black configuration. When in doubt look at the catalogs but beware. The picture in the 1962 USD catalog is of an older "up-graded" DW "Stream Air" with a Mistral sticker on it. This was probably a stock photo and USD was notoriously cheap when upgrading their catalogs. Also, by 1962, USD had replaced the so-called "improved" hose clamps (beginning in "possibly" very late 59 and running till 1961) with the new nut and bolt configuration that VDH produces to this day. They also (and I quote the 1962 and 1963 catalog in the photos below) came with a KLEER-EZ mouthpiece (read further on for clarification) in 1962 though the picture, of course, shows the older reg pic. the same reg. incidentally, that appears in the 1958-62 catalogs. Technically, the 1962 Mistral should look identical (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE YELLOW HOSE COLOR) to the 1963 Mistral according to the product description, as the so-called "scientifically designed" mouthpiece (Curved mouthpiece) had just come out in 1962; see below


You can disagree with me if you like and get your information from the catalogs (try that with the early Scubapro ones), but I'll stick with my 20 years of researching & cataloging serial numbers and comparing them with factory inspection tags stating the exact date a particular serial # was assembled at the factory, as well as original hydro dates on tanks that regulators were sold with along with some other info that I pick up to help narrow down and create windows of time of when regulators were produced and when changes were made.


Ovalis,

I'm not getting into the discussion as I know very little on the subject; however, reg manufacture dates are something I'm trying to learn more about. It's nice to be able to state as accurately as possible what year a particular reg is. Maybe you have published the info on your research before, maybe not, and maybe you are just not ready to as you are still collecting data. Anyway, I for one would like to encourage you to share what you know to date - e.g. in chart or outline form, reg model, serial number range for any given year, etc... If you have already done so that's great I'd appreciate it if you would point me in the right direction. If not, and I'm butting in where I have no business intruding, please take no offense. Always trying to learn. Mark

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Bryan
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Thu May 18, 2017 4:55 pm

Hey Mike, some background about yourself for those that don't know you would add some clarity I think.

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Doing it right should include some common sense, not just blindly following specs and instructions. .Gary D, AWAP on SB

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Bronze06
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Fri May 19, 2017 9:27 am

ovalis wrote:
I will disagree with Ovalis, in that I believe your reg. was made in late 1961 to early 62. The 1963 catalog clearly shows that in that model year the Mistral had a "new type' Kleer-EZ mouthpiece and all black configuration. When in doubt look at the catalogs but beware. The picture in the 1962 USD catalog is of an older "up-graded" DW "Stream Air" with a Mistral sticker on it. This was probably a stock photo and USD was notoriously cheap when upgrading their catalogs. Also, by 1962, USD had replaced the so-called "improved" hose clamps (beginning in "possibly" very late 59 and running till 1961) with the new nut and bolt configuration that VDH produces to this day. They also (and I quote the 1962 and 1963 catalog in the photos below) came with a KLEER-EZ mouthpiece (read further on for clarification) in 1962 though the picture, of course, shows the older reg pic. the same reg. incidentally, that appears in the 1958-62 catalogs. Technically, the 1962 Mistral should look identical (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE YELLOW HOSE COLOR) to the 1963 Mistral according to the product description, as the so-called "scientifically designed" mouthpiece (Curved mouthpiece) had just come out in 1962; see below


You can disagree with me if you like and get your information from the catalogs (try that with the early Scubapro ones), but I'll stick with my 20 years of researching & cataloging serial numbers and comparing them with factory inspection tags stating the exact date a particular serial # was assembled at the factory, as well as original hydro dates on tanks that regulators were sold with along with some other info that I pick up to help narrow down and create windows of time of when regulators were produced and when changes were made.


Hey Ovalis, if you have access to that kind of information feel free to share, as all I have is sleuthing through the inaccurate catalog data and what Ovanessian published. And if you read the area where I say beware with regards to catalogs, you would know I am not basing my decision solely on them. A truly accurate (within reason) list of when and where serial numbers would be wonderful :)
"Where'd ya get that ol' thang, don't cha' know them thare things ill kill ya!"

Live From the Red Sea,

Russ

ovalis
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Posts: 169
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Location: Southern California

Re: W. Pico Mistral

Fri May 19, 2017 2:02 pm

I'm not getting into the discussion as I know very little on the subject; however, reg manufacture dates are something I'm trying to learn more about. It's nice to be able to state as accurately as possible what year a particular reg is. Maybe you have published the info on your research before, maybe not, and maybe you are just not ready to as you are still collecting data. Anyway, I for one would like to encourage you to share what you know to date - e.g. in chart or outline form, reg model, serial number range for any given year, etc... If you have already done so that's great I'd appreciate it if you would point me in the right direction. If not, and I'm butting in where I have no business intruding, please take no offense. Always trying to learn. Mark


Nothing has been published since there are way too many holes in the information to give a complete summary of manufacturing dates for all the regulators that USD manufactured. If I had all the information, I would happily put something out, but to put something out that has more holes in it than something you can hang your hat on is not my style at all. I don't like to do things half ass. For the most part, you should be able to identify the year of manufacture of a particular regulator (with some exceptions) within a 3-4 year window simply by going through the catalogs. If you really want to know the birth date of your regulator, that is pretty tough. Some serial #'s might be able to get close within a couple of months, but for the most part, you're looking at 1-2 window frame. The reason I started collecting serial #'s was not to be able to date the regulators at all (the dates I happened to acquire by luck), but to know exactly what equipment (hose color/style, mouthpiece, yoke, etc) should be on a particular serial # regulator. For example, I would never put a yellow hose assembly on a AM Pico address that the serial # is for a 1961 hose assembly even though the regulators are identical with the exception of the serial #. Just like I would never put a USD valve stamped with a 1957 date on a 1955 hydro date tank. They are different. Most people could care less about those details, but to me it's very important. I collect a lot of other things besides vintage scuba, and those details are important. I would never put a worm screw hose clamp on a radiator in my Bronco that came with a tower clamp. Anyhow, anybody that has any questions on their particular serial #, feel free to ask me and I'll do my best to answer your questions. Some I may have a good answer, and some I may not.

Hey Mike, some background about yourself for those that don't know you would add some clarity I think.


Bryan, you make it sound like I'm somebody important, lol. I'm just an ordinary, average guy who rarely gets to go out diving anymore, but have been collecting for almost 30 years and was fortunate enough in the early days to make some connections in my dive shop to recognize and get my hands on a lot of stuff.

Hey Ovalis, if you have access to that kind of information feel free to share, as all I have is sleuthing through the inaccurate catalog data and what Ovanessian published.


Ovalis & Ovanessian are one and the same. I never published anything, I just helped Allan with some serial # info for the fantastic write up he did.

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Bronze06
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Location: Tabuk, Saudi Arabia

Re: W. Pico Mistral

Sat May 20, 2017 1:34 am

ovalis wrote:
I'm not getting into the discussion as I know very little on the subject; however, reg manufacture dates are something I'm trying to learn more about. It's nice to be able to state as accurately as possible what year a particular reg is. Maybe you have published the info on your research before, maybe not, and maybe you are just not ready to as you are still collecting data. Anyway, I for one would like to encourage you to share what you know to date - e.g. in chart or outline form, reg model, serial number range for any given year, etc... If you have already done so that's great I'd appreciate it if you would point me in the right direction. If not, and I'm butting in where I have no business intruding, please take no offense. Always trying to learn. Mark


Nothing has been published since there are way too many holes in the information to give a complete summary of manufacturing dates for all the regulators that USD manufactured. If I had all the information, I would happily put something out, but to put something out that has more holes in it than something you can hang your hat on is not my style at all. I don't like to do things half ass. For the most part, you should be able to identify the year of manufacture of a particular regulator (with some exceptions) within a 3-4 year window simply by going through the catalogs. If you really want to know the birth date of your regulator, that is pretty tough. Some serial #'s might be able to get close within a couple of months, but for the most part, you're looking at 1-2 window frame. The reason I started collecting serial #'s was not to be able to date the regulators at all (the dates I happened to acquire by luck), but to know exactly what equipment (hose color/style, mouthpiece, yoke, etc) should be on a particular serial # regulator. For example, I would never put a yellow hose assembly on a AM Pico address that the serial # is for a 1961 hose assembly even though the regulators are identical with the exception of the serial #. Just like I would never put a USD valve stamped with a 1957 date on a 1955 hydro date tank. They are different. Most people could care less about those details, but to me it's very important. I collect a lot of other things besides vintage scuba, and those details are important. I would never put a worm screw hose clamp on a radiator in my Bronco that came with a tower clamp. Anyhow, anybody that has any questions on their particular serial #, feel free to ask me and I'll do my best to answer your questions. Some I may have a good answer, and some I may not.

Hey Mike, some background about yourself for those that don't know you would add some clarity I think.


Bryan, you make it sound like I'm somebody important, lol. I'm just an ordinary, average guy who rarely gets to go out diving anymore, but have been collecting for almost 30 years and was fortunate enough in the early days to make some connections in my dive shop to recognize and get my hands on a lot of stuff.

Hey Ovalis, if you have access to that kind of information feel free to share, as all I have is sleuthing through the inaccurate catalog data and what Ovanessian published.


Ovalis & Ovanessian are one and the same. I never published anything, I just helped Allan with some serial # info for the fantastic write up he did.


Addressing the last sentence, I had a feeling that might be the case. Ha, Ha Ha!!! This is why I hate "nom de plumes" on the internet. Hey the information you had published on VDH is a great tool. I am sure that we would all love to have the ability to date regs within 3 to 6 months of their birth, so we do the best we can. I am a stickler as well as to attempting to get the correct parts/pieces onto a given reg. Thank you Mike for your help there. BY THE WAY MY FIRST NAME IS RUSSELL FOLKS! If you have a relatively updated serial list that would be way cool.
As a side bar, when ever I hear that a company or governmental entity had "a fire" in their records department, I am very suspect. Why is it always the records department? Why not the main office or in the plant or parking lot for that matter? The US Veterans Administration conveniently had one within 3 years after the Vietnam war ended and I am sure that they will have a data crash for more recent fun and games soon. Sorry, I am a bit jaded.
"Where'd ya get that ol' thang, don't cha' know them thare things ill kill ya!"

Live From the Red Sea,

Russ

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ScubaLawyer
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Re: W. Pico Mistral

Sat May 20, 2017 1:49 am

Mike, Ovalis & Ovanessian:

Thanks for the reply. It all makes sense. Keep up the good work. I will take you up on your offer to look at a particular serial number one day. I see you are in So. Cal. We probably know some of the same people from back in the day.

If Bryan says you are somebody important then it must be true. I'll put you down in the important column for now. :D Mark

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